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TAMPA, Fla., July 28, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMEX), a pioneer in the field of deep-ocean shipwreck exploration, has begun its search for the SS Gairsoppa aboard the Russian research vessel the RV Yuzhmorgeologiya. "The team, tools and technology are in place for the Gairsoppa project and the ship has left port to head directly to the search area. The technology that the Russian research institute has brought to the project is perfect for this expedition. Odyssey's Senior Project Manager Andrew Craig, who has contributed to all our major shipwreck finds beginning with the SS Republic, is currently leading the operation. We have a great research file on this shipwreck and we're hopeful that we can complete the search successfully within the next 60 days," said Greg Stemm, Odyssey CEO. "It's an exciting season for Odyssey. In addition to the Gairsoppa search operations aboard the Yuzhmorgeologiya, the Odyssey Explorer has a full schedule working on shipwrecks and the Dorado Discovery is mid-way through another productive seafloor massive sulfide deposit survey in the South Pacific." The Gairsoppa was torpedoed by a German U-Boat in February 1941 while enlisted in the service of the United Kingdom (UK) Ministry of War Transport. Contemporary research and official documents indicate that the ship was carrying as much as POUND 600,000 (1941 value) in silver when it sank, which would equal approximately 7,000,000 ounces of the precious metal. The UK Department for Transport awarded Odyssey, through a competitive bid, the exclusive salvage contract for the cargo of the SS Gairsoppa in 2010. Under the salvage contract, Odyssey will pay the UK Government 20% of the value of the cargo. Timing of the recovery operation will depend on the physical disposition of the shipwreck and weather. About Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMEX) is engaged in deep-ocean exploration using innovative methods and state-of-the-art technology. The Company is a world leader in shipwreck exploration, conducting extensive search and archaeological recovery operations on deep-ocean shipwrecks around the world. Odyssey also has a minority ownership stake in Neptune Minerals, a company focused on discovering and commercializing high-value mineral deposits from the ocean floor, and provides proprietary deep-ocean expertise and equipment to Neptune Minerals under contract. Odyssey also provides deep-ocean contracting services to governments and companies around the world. Odyssey discovered the Civil War-era shipwreck of the SS Republic(R) in 2003 and recovered over 50,000 coins and 14,000 artifacts from the site nearly 1,700 feet deep. In May 2007, Odyssey announced the historic deep-ocean treasure recovery of over 500,000 silver and gold coins, weighing 17 tons, from a Colonial era site code-named "Black Swan." In February 2009, Odyssey announced the discovery of Balchin's HMS Victory. Odyssey also has other shipwreck projects in various stages of development around the world. Odyssey offers various ways to share in the excitement of deep-ocean exploration by making shipwreck treasures and artifacts available to collectors, the general public and students through its webstore, exhibits, books, television, merchandise, educational programs and virtual museum located at www.odysseysvirtualmuseum.com. The company also maintains a Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OdysseyMarine and a Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/OdysseyMarine. Odyssey's shipwreck operations are the subject of a Discovery Channel television series titled "Treasure Quest," produced by JWM Productions. The 12-episode first season aired worldwide in 2009. Following previous successful engagements in New Orleans, Tampa, Detroit, Oklahoma City, Charlotte and Baltimore, Odyssey's SHIPWRECK! exhibit is currently on display at G.WIZ - The Science Museum in Sarasota, Florida until August 31, 2011. The exhibit will then open at the Witte Museum in San Antonio, TX on October 1, 2011. For details on Odyssey's activities and its commitment to the preservation of maritime heritage please visit www.shipwreck.net. The Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=7185 Odyssey Marine Exploration believes the information set forth in this Press Release may include "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Act of 1934. Certain factors that could cause results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements are set forth in "Risk Factors" in Part I, Item 1A of the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. CONTACT: Liz Shows Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (813) 876-1776 x 2335 email@example.com